Tuesday, June 30, 2015


I have really felt quite lost after posting all 242 pages of my mother's book Clock of Time.   Reliving all those years with her made me feel rather insignificant in the scheme of things compared with her achievements.  Sort of set me back a peg of two and I asked myself what can I now contribute here on my blog that would even compare in a small way?

What may suffice for now is to chat on Tuesdays about little things in my life that cheer me.

Recently was 'chatting' on Facebook to a nephew of mine (this from my official family) about Len, my adopted half brother) who you would remember was mentioned several times in mum's book. 

Steve managed to find lots of information for me about Len being in the RAAF and one surprising document he found was Len's will which he had made on 23rd September, 1940 when I was 8 years old.  This is the will itself which is too difficult to read so explanation below:

It of course begins with the usual THIS IS THE LAST WILL of me Henry Leonard Ruston etc etc and named dad as his Executor etc etc........and then:

"To my wife I desire to leave all properties owned by me and all monies and possessions, with the exception of twenty pounds (£20) which is to be given to my sister Miss Peggy Ruston of 67 Auckland St, Mt Hawthorn at the age of 21 years."

To find this out 75 years later was such a surprise to me and it was wonderful that he cared so much about his little sister and £20 was quite a good sum of money in 1940.  I imagine it would have been put into a trust fund, earning interest until I was 21.

Of course in later years Len and Jean had two daughters and Len's will would have been changed, possibly several times.  The whole point is my brother included me in what probably was his very first will and it cheered me up no end just thinking about it.  I knew then that he loved me very much.

Monday, June 29, 2015


A little laugh to begin the week well for you:

Hope you have a good week.

Saturday, June 27, 2015


Firstly, I am really not sure how a post dated 3rd July came to appear here today.  I hope you didn't miss my Friday Frivolity No 4 which was also posted today as it was a special favourite of mine that I hoped to share with you.

Secondly, as you know I make a lot of crochet rugs for Vinnys so there are always completed rugs waiting to go there and others in various stages of completion.

For some weeks now Candy, of an evening, has been sleeping on a small armchair near the window in the living room.   Last night I suddenly realised she was not on the chair and nor was she on one of the beds which are her other favourite places.

I then remembered her going into the 'other' half of the living room so I got up to check.  Behind the sofa is a desk on which I had placed some of my crochet, both completed (you can see those on the left of the picture), and in the process of being made.   Who should I find making herself comfortable in a box containing pieces of work but Candy:

The expression on her face said "OK so you found me and yes, thank you, I'm very comfortable."  Now this box would be the size of perhaps two shoe boxes placed together but she managed to look so cosy and in fact went back to the same box three times during the evening.

This is a cat that won't sit on my knee if I have a cocheted rug over me and yet here she is cuddling up to crocheted pieces.   If she persists in doing this I'll have to make some bits for her as I don't think she should be sleeping on work that is intended to go to an op shop to be sold.

Honestly though, have you ever seen a cat look so contented as Candy does here?  Right now she has taken possession of my armchair which I will reclaim when I go to watch TV.  I am wondering if it will be back to the usual armchair or into the box.   I'll let you know later what happens.

Friday, June 26, 2015


With my love of piano music I decided to go to YouTube and find the Rustle of Spring by Sinding.  I once played it on the piano (my daughter remembers me doing so and she too loves the tune) and have always thought it a particularly beautiful piece of piano music.  I chose it as my set piece when sitting for my Grade 3 pianoforte exam and the examiner seemed quite pleased with my attempt so I must have played reasonably well.

Here Daniel Sabbah gives a delightful rendition of Rustle of Spring.  Please do enjoy it with me:

Looking at these poor old hands now I wonder to myself was I really once able to play music such as this.  I am so glad I could as it was really wonderful and so relaxing.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015


Do you perhaps suffer with people like this in your life?

Tuesday, June 23, 2015


YANCHEP NATIONAL PARK is 42 kilometres (26 miles) north of Perth, Western Australia.  Thepark is noted for its caves, native bush and koala colonies.  It also offer cultural educational programmes in partnership with the local Nyoongar aboringal people.

 History:  The area was inhabited and was a noted hunting site for thousands of years by indigenous Australians prior to arrival of Europeans.  The tribal name for the park is Nyanyi-Yandjip named after the reeds and lake which were thought to resemble the hairy mane of the dreamtime creature the Waugul.  The word Yanchep is derived from Yandjip or Yanget.

The first European visitor arrived in 1834 when John Butler, a farmer, came in search of his lost cattle and noted the presence of the lakes, wetlands and plentiful game.  While in the area Butler was greeted by the men of the Yallagonga peoples who inhabited the area.

Lieutenant George Grey travelled through the area in 1838 and made note of the remarkable caves he found in the area.

 The ballroom cave is often used for weddings and other celebrations.

 Surveyor John Septimus Roe and Governor John Hutt visited the caves in the park in 1841.  A road survey was conducted near Lock McNess in 1862 and later in 1864 a stock route was built through the area that was later used by drovers.

The first settler to arrive in the area as Henry White who arrived in 1901 and built his house near the north-west shore of Yonderup Lake.   He was later appointed caretaker and guide in 1903.

Flora and Fauna:  The park is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna.  Trees such as banksias, paperbark, tuart, marri, sheoak and stunted jarrah are found in the woodland areas.  Wildflowers incluing parrot bush, Yanchep rose, catspaw and kangaroo paw are also found in the park.

The park provides habitat for several species of native mammal including the quenda, western grey kangaroo, and black glove wallaby.

The park lies within the Northern Swan Coastal Plain Important Bird Area, so identified by Birdlife International because of its importance is supporting several thousand short-billed black cockatoos during the non-breeding season.

Monday, June 22, 2015


This really doesn't need any extra words.  Hope it starts your week with a laugh that continues right through to Friday, or at least Wednesday when River gives us all a reason to laugh.

Sunday, June 21, 2015


Many years ago, probably about 1980, my mum gave me this lovely little perpetual calendar, one on which you manually change the date each day.  It has sat in various places in our kitchen but since the repairs last year (who was it flooded the kitchen I wonder??) it sits in pride of place on the microwave.  No, our microwave isn't mauve, that was the backing to take the picture!!

When granddaughter #2 Aimee came here as a child she loved to change the date without me knowing and it became a real game between the two of us.  I have a little note attached to the bottom of the calendar saying when I am gone I want Aimee to have it as a remembrance of the wonderful times we had when she and her siblings were young.  They used to spend so much time at our home and we have such happy memories of those times.

Saturday, June 20, 2015


I've always thought Garfield has it all worked out!!

Friday, June 19, 2015

FRIDAY FRIVOLITY No 3 (running late)

Who, over the years, hasn't enjoyed the wonderful voice of Luciano Pavarotti?  Phil and I love the concerts put on the by the 3 Tenors but this one song 'Nessun Dorma" (None shall sleep) from the final act of Turandot by Giacomo Puccini, has always made me hold my breath.  It really does give me goose bumps.  I know this type of music is not everyone's cup of tea but do just take a few minutes to enjoy this with me.

You will find over the coming weeks I have a very varied taste in music, except for the very modern music which I find hard to look on as true music.  I find that modern stereos always seem to have too much base in them and you get the constant pounding of boom boom boom which just puts me right off.

Thursday, June 18, 2015


HILLARYS BOAT HARBOUR is a marina and tourist precinct located in Hillarys, north of Perth, Western Australia on the Indian Ocean.

It was the first such major marina in the north metropolitan region of Perth.  Construction of the new harbour commenced in September, 1985.  Boat launching facilities were completed in October, 1986 and boats started moving into the pen moorings two months later, just before the start of the 1987 America's Cup Challenge Series.

The facility was extensively upgraded during 2008 to incorporate a new boardwalk, tavern and retail outlets.  A feature of this upgrade is a drawbridge arrangement to allow boats to be moored inside the network of boardwalks.

Hillarys is also home to AQWA - The Aquarium of Western Australia - which showcases the marine life and unique regions of Western Australia's 12,000 km coastline.  The aquarium opens daily.  Other attractions in and around the harbour include a waterslide and putt-putt course as well as fishing charters and cruises.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015


In my own case I think I am still awaiting the coming of wisdom.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015


GOVERNMENT HOUSE is one of Perth's most magnificent properties.  Built in 1863 and set in 3.2 hectares of beautiful gardens, both the buildings and gardens are listed on the State's heritage register.

History:   Captain James Stirling, RN, arrived from England to found the Colony of Western Australia which he proclaimed in June, 1829.

The first "Vice Regal" residence was originally a tent camp, set up on Garden Island, between June and September, 1829.   Later, following the founding of Perth on the banks of the Swan River in August, 1829, Stirling and his family moved to a site on the corner of St George's Terrace an Barrack Street (now Stirling Gardens ..which I showed in a previous post).  In 1832, canvas gave way to a temporary building for the Vice Regal family in that location.

Stirling's official designation of Lieutenant Governor was superseded by that of Governor in November, 1831.  In August, 1832, Stirling returned to England where he was knighted.  On his return to Perth in 1934, he took temporary possession of the newly completed Officers' Barracks and instructed Henry William Reveley, a civil engineer, who arrived in the Colony with Stirling in 1829 to prepare drawings for a new Government House (situated just inside the main entrance gates of the modern domain).

This "new" Government House was a severe but correctly proportioned Georgian building, similar in its architectural excellence of the Old *Supreme Court nearby (designed by Reveley and build in 1837). Stirling had moved in my 1834, prior to completion of the work in 1835.

From the beginning the building was inadequate.  Apart from such defects as roofs leaking, termites consuming the flooring, and the porous walls absorbing moisture, the House lacked accommodation for visitors and facilities for the large functions expected of the Vice Regal establishment.

Stirling resigned in October, 1837 and left the Colony for England in January, 1839.  Four successive Governors resided in Reveley's first Government House until 1855.

Governor Arthur Edward Kennedy (1855-1862) commented in despatches to Lord Russell, the Secretary of State:-  "The House was and is in such a state I would not have occupied it had I been able to rent a suitable house.  It will be scarcely habitable in winter and there will be a constant outlay for repairs and replacing decayed woodwork etc. while it is occupied."  (Despatch No. 114 of November 9, 1855)  Governor Kennedy and his family were forced to reside in Fremantle during the winter months.

Following a report commissioned by the Governor, eventually an ordinance passed by the Legislative Council in September, 1858 enabled funding for the erection of a new House.  The foundation stone was laid on March 17, 1859 in an impressive ceremony conducted by the Masonic Lodge of St John.  Lieutenant Colonel (later Sir) E.Y.W. Henderson, RE, Comptroller of Convicts, designed the second permanent Government House with assistance from the Colony's surveyors, particularly James Manning, Clerk of Works.

The new Government House was fated to endure the same problems of indecision and inconvenience as its predecessor with the shortage of private and skilled labour and difficulties with the site.  Costs spiralled from the original budget of £15,000 by June, 1863.

Governor Kennedy was never to occupy the residence he had done so much to create.  Governor John Stephen Hampton (1862) took up residence in 1863 prior to the completion of the House n 1864.  "Old Government House" was subsequently demolished in the early 1880s.

While Henderson modelled the new Government House on Jacobean archetypes, Gothic remains the central ingredient in his final design.  Government House has a picturesque architectural character demonstrated in the use of stone work and bonded brickwork, incorporating square mullioned windows, decorated gables and ogival capped turrets.  The attenuated Gothic arcading at fround floor level derives from another form of Victorian Revival expression in vogue in England during the nineteenth century - Fonthill Gothick.

Governnor Hampton was undertaking changes to the new house even before it was finished.  He wanted more space for official and public entertainment, an important aspect of his role, and ensured that space was created in the upper floor to accommodate a small ballroom.

Perth's Government House is not large by normal Vice Regal standards, but it gives an impression of spaciousness.  It has 16 rooms on the ground floor and 25 on the first floor.

By June 1867, a banqueting hall had been erected next to Government House (on the present ballroom site) in anticipation of a visit by Prince Alfred in 1869, the first "Royal" visit to Western Australia.  Some original drawings dating from 1897 show the early designs for adding a new ballroom, dining room and executive council room to the House  The Government architect of the day, Mr John Grainger, signed the drawings but the designs are believed to have been done by Hillson Beasley.  Although a major addition to the House, there apparently was no attempt made to conform to the original design.  The Beasley design was in the style of Free Classicism which was popular at that time.  Unfortunately even this design was not finally built.  The 1899 ballroom was much reduced in size and style to the original drawings.

Conservation:  In 1989 the government of the day commissioned a Conservation Plan for Government House which was completed by architect Mr Ron Bodycoat AM FAIA in 1990, and led to a series of restoration and refurbishment projects in the House and Grounds from 1990 to the present day.  The Conservation and Management Plan for the Gardens were completed in 1998 as an important part of the conservation strategy.

Well into the last century, Government House continued to be recognised as one of the State's most important society addresses, and while economic depression and was in the 1930s and 1940s diminished the viceregal residence's lustre, the post was urban renewal almost resulted in its destruction; over the past thirty years community interest, involvement, and activism resulted in a long overdue official heritage listing and renewed public interest in its chequered past.

The above information from www.govhouse.wa.gov.au website.   All the photographs are of the house and gardens in this modern age.

* This is the Supreme Court:

Monday, June 15, 2015


Another laugh to get the week going on the right note and apologies to my male blogger friends, but I couldn't resist this one.   I am sure it applies to none of you.

Sunday, June 14, 2015


Have an enjoyable Sunday.  I will be back tomorrow.

Saturday, June 13, 2015


I am here but am taking the weekend off from blogging.  Life sometimes catches up with me and with this shoulder not responding to the injection (from 2 weeks back) and other bibs and bobs playing up I have decided less typing would rest my hands and watching Aussie Rules footy all day today would rest the other parts of me.  Both Western Australian team games are on, one after the other which is unusual but quite enjoyable.

It has been a trying week.....Phil had a fall the other night and took more than skin off an elbow and a knee.  Fortunately he was wearing a thick coat and trousers so could have been far worse.  I've told him to remember he is 85 and not a youngster any more and not to take short cuts when returning to the car but 'walk around any obstacles'.  He is mending fine.

He also grazed our little car too when parking close to one of those monstrous concrete pillars and with the cost of car repairs these days!!!  Off to the panel beater for a quote next week to decide whether to claim on insurance or not.  Depends I guess on the excess on our policy.

I am truly loving our new windows and wondering why I didn't do it years ago.  Guess the back of the house was never that important.

Our Candy is as beautiful as ever and enjoys wandering around our front garden where she is well shielded from the street with a fence, gate and lots of shrubbery. We love that cat so much and, no, she is not in this picture.  I must try and capture her on film (no we don't use film now do we?) one day.

Hopefully will be back next week firing on most, if not all cylinders.  Hope one and all that you have an enjoyable and restful weekend.  I will be checking your blogs even if I don't perhaps leave a comment.  I enjoy them all so much.

             H A V E     A    G R E A T     W E E K E N D

Friday, June 12, 2015


Last week I chose a good old rock and roll tune that I've always loved.  I also enjoy classical music (I played the piano for a number of years) and Chopin is one of my favourite composers.   I think his Minute Waltz Op. 64 No. is  just so beautiful and I hope you enjoy it as well.  (From YouTube)

It is performed by classical pianist Lang Lang during a rehearsal at Boston's Symphony Hall on 27 February, 2013.  He is a true showman.  I thought it would be different to show him rehearsing rather than playing at a serious concert.

Once again, hoping this will come through OK.  This is, of course, me experimenting and with my minute knowledge of computing in general I always have my fingers crossed (or would if I could cross them).  (*:*)

Thursday, June 11, 2015


JOHN FORREST NATIONAL PARK is a national park in the Darling Scarp, 24km east of Perth, Western Australia.  It was the first national park in Western Australia and the second in Australia after Royal National Park.

As early as 1898, the land was reserved for conservation and recreation.  Two years later, it was named Greenmount National Park and several years later the name was changed to commemorate Sir John Forrest, the first Premier of Western Australia.

It is situated on the edge of the Darling Scarp east of Perth and north of the Great Eastern Highway.  The suburb to the west is known as Swan View and to the south are the suburbs of Darlington and Glen Forrest.  Hovea is a suburb to the east of the park.

History....It was dissected by the Eastern Railway when it was constructed in the 1890s and rail traffic passed through until 1966, when the line was closed due to the opening of the Avon Valley route.   The alignment through the Swan View Tunnel and through the park was commonly known as the "National Park" railway line.  The old tunnel:

During the Great Depression on the 1930s many features near the main park buildings were built as part of relief employment.  Some have been restored.  It also has a tavern.  *It was a very popular railway excursion location while the railway was in existence (1890s to 1960s).  Initially Hovea was the nearest railway station but in 1936 the National Park railway station was built.  Also often photographed were National Park Falls and Hovea Falls.

After the railway line was closed and removed the formation became part of the Railway Reserves Heritage Trail vested in the Mundaring Shire Council.  The section within the park is now known as the John Forrest Heritage Trail.  The Glen Brook Walk Trail and the Eagle's View Walk trail are also within the park.

While larger kangaroos remain, significant populations of smaller marsupials have been decimated by foxes, feral cats and dogs in this park.

Drought and dieback have affected the jarrah forest and, at the edges of the park, introduced species of weed and problematic vegetation threaten the integrity of the park.  Also with rationalisation within the government department that manages the park, earlier levels of staff have been reduced to minimal levels.

Significant damaging bushfires occurred in the western and northern sections of the park in the 1990s and early 2000s.  In November, 2010 a bushfire, believed to have been deliberately lit, damaged a significant area of the park including part of the Eagle's View Trail.

Although the scenic drive through the park remains free, access to the tavern and facilities area require payment.

*I remember back in the 1940s, together with three friends, catching the train to John Forrest N.P.  We spent the day there, swimming, eating our lunches and generally having a great day out.  I am trying to recall if there was a shop on site ... I think perhaps there was unless we took our lunches with us, which people often did in those days.